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Article

Role of Horizontal Eddy Diffusivity within the Canopy on Fire Spread

1
Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Institute, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL 32306, USA
2
Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM 87545, USA
3
Department of Scientific Computing, Florida State University, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL 32306, USA
4
USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station, Morgantown, WV 26505, USA
5
USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station, Lansing, MI 48823, USA
6
Department of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL 32306, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Atmosphere 2020, 11(6), 672; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos11060672
Received: 21 March 2020 / Revised: 22 June 2020 / Accepted: 23 June 2020 / Published: 26 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Atmospheric Turbulence Processes and Wildland Fires)
Wind profile observations are used to estimate turbulent mixing in the atmospheric boundary layer from 1 m up to 300 m height in two locations of pine forests characteristic of the southeast US region, and to 30 m height at one location in the northeast. Basic turbulence characteristics of the boundary layers above and within the canopy were measured near prescribed fires for time periods spanning the burns. Together with theoretical models for the mean horizontal velocity and empirical relations between mean flow and variance, we derive the lateral diffusivity using Taylor’s frozen turbulence hypothesis in the thin surface-fuel layer. This parameter is used in a simple 1D model to predict the spread of surface fires in different wind conditions. Initial assessments of sensitivity of the fire spread rates to the lateral diffusivity are made. The lateral diffusivity with and without fire-induced wind is estimated and associated fire spread rates are explored. Our results support the conceptual framework that eddy dynamics in the fuel layer is set by larger eddies developed in the canopy layer aloft. The presence of fire modifies the wind, hence spread rate, depending on the fire intensity. View Full-Text
Keywords: canopy boundary layer; atmosphere; horizontal eddy diffusivity; fuel layer canopy boundary layer; atmosphere; horizontal eddy diffusivity; fuel layer
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MDPI and ACS Style

Bebieva, Y.; Oliveto, J.; Quaife, B.; Skowronski, N.S.; Heilman, W.E.; Speer, K. Role of Horizontal Eddy Diffusivity within the Canopy on Fire Spread. Atmosphere 2020, 11, 672. https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos11060672

AMA Style

Bebieva Y, Oliveto J, Quaife B, Skowronski NS, Heilman WE, Speer K. Role of Horizontal Eddy Diffusivity within the Canopy on Fire Spread. Atmosphere. 2020; 11(6):672. https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos11060672

Chicago/Turabian Style

Bebieva, Yana; Oliveto, Julia; Quaife, Bryan; Skowronski, Nicholas S.; Heilman, Warren E.; Speer, Kevin. 2020. "Role of Horizontal Eddy Diffusivity within the Canopy on Fire Spread" Atmosphere 11, no. 6: 672. https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos11060672

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